Peter Wright, right, is out of the World Darts Championship ©Getty Images

Reigning champion Peter Wright is out of the Professional Darts Corporation (PDC) World Darts Championship after losing a seven-set thriller to Gabriel Clemens.

Scotland's Wright, seeded second at London's Alexandra Palace, won the first set and ended the match with a three-dart average of 101.50, yet was knocked out by the 31st-seeded German.

Clemens held his nerve in the deciding seventh set, and with three darts at 38 to win the match opted to set up his preferred double 16 - which Clemens hit first time.

Wright's defeat means three of the top five seeds have now exited the competition, but not world number one Michael van Gerwen.

The Dutchman blew past England Ricky Evans 4-0 to book a place in round four, averaging 106.85. 

Krzysztof Ratajski and Dimitri Van den Bergh also secured whitewash victories to reach the fourth.

Pole Ratajski had a lower three-dart average than Australia's Simon Whitlock - a former World Darts Championship runner-up - yet won the best-of-seven-sets match 4-0.

Krzysztof Ratajski, in red, knocked out Simon Whitlock ©Getty Images
Krzysztof Ratajski, in red, knocked out Simon Whitlock ©Getty Images

Whitlock's average was 93.69, Ratajski's 93.37, but the Pole was more clinical on the doubles.

Clemens is up next for Ratajski, and neither has previously gone this far at the PDC's marquee event.

Englishman Ryan Searle was the second player through to round four, defeating Belgian Kim Huybrechts 4-2.

The last 16 is the furthest he has been before, in 2019.

Belgium did have joy in Van den Bergh's match, however, as he blew past Dutch player Jermaine Wattimena.

Averaging 96.63, the 26-year-old - a two-time youth world champion - won 4-0.

Via a 4-3 win over Welshman Jonny Clayton, England's Joe Cullen has also reached the last 16, but faces a daunting match versus Van Gerwen.